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Polk’s React soundbar goes big on Alexa

"Alexa, how do I make my telly sound better?"
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26 January 2021 / 12:46GMT

As Tom Jones once sang, it’s not unusual to find a soundbar with Alexa onboard these days – but Polk reckons its new React (£249) is more advanced than any other. What does it have to back up such outlandish claims? Well it has four far-field microphones built in and supports Alexa’s Communication features, so you can use it to make calls and announcements to Echo devices, while Alexa Multi-room Music means you can pair other equally skilled speakers to form a musical network throughout your gaff. Of course, the React is much more than just a long, thin Echo. It works with Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1 to make things sound as lifelike as possible, and while there’s no Atmos support, you can add some SR2 wireless surround speakers (£159) and a React Sub (£179) if you’re after something even closer to a bonafide 5.1 experience. Voice commands even extend to the woofer’s bass levels, plus there are one-button controls for switching between audio modes. That includes a Night Mode, which minimises the low-end rumbles and enhances the dialogue, so you can carry on your nocturnal Sopranos sessions without waking up the rest of the house. All three will be available to buy next month, but you can pre-order on Amazon now.

Audio